Read an Excerpt
Despicable Me 2: The Junior Novel
By Annie Auerbach
Little, Brown Books for Young ReadersCopyright © 2013 Annie Auerbach
All rights reserved.
Gru surveys the scene in front of him. Yep, it's time. He grabs a menacing-looking weapon, pulls the trigger, and ... out comes a unicorn balloon! He puts it next to the other ones lining the windowsill and smiles, knowing they look just perfect for Agnes's sixth birthday party.
Not long after, the party is in full swing. The yard is decorated with balloons and streamers, along with a big bouncy house shaped like a castle. But this is no regular party with boring party games. This is a party thrown by Gru!
In one corner, two little girls fish in a small kiddie pool. One of the girls gets a bite and happily pulls up a toy fish ... until a real-life piranha jumps out and eats the toy fish! In another part of the yard, a boy and a girl sword fight. The boy does a bunch of fancy moves, but the girl is not impressed. She waits patiently for him to finish showing off, then pounds him with a club.
Agnes goes down a slide, a giant grin on her face. "This is the best party EVER!" she declares. Her friends are dressed as duchesses and countesses, while Agnes is dressed as a princess riding a unicorn, which is her favorite animal in the whole entire world!
Meanwhile, Edith is dressed as a ninja. She climbs across the monkey bars, just as a bunch of boxing gloves and blades shoot up from below. She avoids them with skill and ease. She then jumps to the ground, narrowly avoiding a bear trap.
"Ha-ha! Yeah!" she exclaims.
Just then, Agnes runs into the middle of the yard and screams, "Oh no! A dragon is approaching!"
All the kids turn to see Gru's pet dressed as a dragon. His name is Kyle, and he has long, spiky teeth. Kyle is not thrilled to play the part of the dragon and grumbles, causing the kids to scream and huddle around Agnes.
Then Agnes's oldest sister, Margo, comes out dressed as Joan of Arc. She is wearing a suit of armor and carrying a mighty sword.
"Fear not," announces Margo. "For here come the gallant knights!"
She gestures to a group of Minions wearing tiny suits of armor and holding different medieval weapons. The kids cheer as the Minions charge toward Kyle. But Minion One accidentally pokes another with his sword. A spiked mace hits another Minion. A fight breaks out, and soon the Minions are fighting one another, rather than Kyle, the dragon.
Meanwhile, Gru is busy grilling burgers by the barbecue and talking on his cell phone.
"No, no, no!" he screams into the phone. "What do you mean she's not coming? I have a backyard full of these little girls who are counting on a visit from a fairy princess!" He listens for a minute and then says, "I don't want a refund! I want a fairy princess. Please! I am begging you!"
But the person on the other end of the line still says no.
Gru's voice gets low, and he says, "You know what? I hope you can sleep at night, you crusher of little girls' dreams!" He hangs up with a huff and turns to see Agnes standing in front of him.
"Ooh, ooh! When's the fairy princess coming?" she asks expectantly.
Gru stares down at Agnes's large, excited eyes. He opens his mouth to tell her the truth, but he just can't do it. "Any minute now!" he says instead.
"Yayyyy!" Agnes squeals with excitement and gallops off.
A worried look crosses Gru's face. What am I going to do now? he thinks.
He spots two Minions and instructs them to keep the children entertained for a few minutes.
The Minions get right to work, directing the kids to sit in a semicircle on the grass. Then the Minions dress up as magicians and ask Edith to be their assistant.
One Minion blows up a balloon and puts it in Edith's mouth. Then the other pulls out a chain saw and heads straight for her!
Luckily, Margo is there to intervene. "Whoa! Whoa! Okay, all right. That's enough of the magic show!"
"Awww," the Minions and Edith say, disappointed.
Margo suddenly looks around. "Wait, did you hear that?" she asks the little girls. "It sounded like the twinkling sounds of magical fairy dust!"
The kids gasp and look around.
"It's the fairy princess!" exclaims Agnes. "She's coming!"
"Look!" yells Margo, pointing to the sky.
Up in the air is the fairy princess: Gru! He is dressed in a puffy pink dress, fairy wings, glittery eyelashes, and a tiara, and is holding a wand. Edith's jaw drops at the sight, and the inflated balloon slips out of her mouth and flies up into the air.
Up on top of the house, many Minions struggle to lower the fairy princess down on a rope. But when Edith's balloon floats up and passes them, they get distracted. The Minions let go of the rope, and Gru swings wildly, smashing into the wall of the house before crashing to the ground.
"Aaaaaahhhh!" Gru screams.
Then he stands up and regains his fairylike composure. Adopting a high-pitched voice, he says to the girls, "It is I, Gru ... zinkerbell! The most magical fairy princess of all! And I am here to wish Princess Agnes a very happy birthday!" Agnes beams with joy!
Gru sprinkles the other partygoers with glitter as they simply stare at him, frozen in their spots.
Then a little girl raises her hand. "How come you're so fat?" she asks.
Gru grits his teeth and forces a smile. "Because my house is made of candy, and sometimes I eat instead of facing my problems." Before the same little girl can ask another question, Gru says, "Okay! Time for cake!"
As the kids cheer and run to the table, Agnes approaches Gru. "Thank you, Gru- zinkerbell. You're the best fairy princess ever!"
Gru smiles. In the high-pitched voice, he replies, "You are welcome, little girl."
Agnes runs off but quickly returns. She whispers in Gru's ear. "I know it's really you, Gru. I'm just pretending for the other kids."
Gru watches Agnes join her friends. He couldn't be prouder....
Then Jillian comes into view. She is an annoying mother of one of the kids at the party and is always pestering Gru.
"Sooo ...," she begins. "I'm going to go out on a limb here, but my friend Natalie is recently single and—"
"No, no, no, get off the limb right now," Gru says as soon as he realizes what Jillian is saying. "No limb!"
"Come on," Jillian continues. "She's a riot. She sings karaoke. She has a lot of free time—looks aren't that important to her."
Gru shakes his head. "No, that is not happening. Seriously. I'm fine." He begins to walk away from her.
Jillian calls after Gru. "Okay, fine. Forget Natalie. How about my cousin Linda?"
"No!" answers Gru.
"Oh, oh!" exclaims Jillian. "I know someone whose husband just died!"
Just then, a Minion with his helmet on backward walks over and accidentally smashes Jillian in the shin with his club.
"Ow! Hey! Ow!" Jillian says as she limps away.
Gru is secretly grateful for the Minion. He just wants to relax and enjoy the rest of the day.
Too bad that's not the plan. Gru has no idea who's lurking just beyond the driveway ... .
As dusk falls over the town, Gru takes Kyle out to the front yard. The creature lifts up his leg next to Gru's flowers.
"Kyle! No! Do not do your business on the petunias!" Gru scolds. He picks up Kyle and places him next to his neighbor's bush. "There you go. Those are Fred's. Go crazy."
Kyle does, and the bush immediately withers and dies. Gru chuckles. "Good boy."
A stranger's voice startles the pair. "Mr. Gru?"
Gru turns and sees a tall, redheaded woman standing there.
She holds up her badge. "Hi! Agent Lucy Wilde of the Anti-Villain League." She realizes her badge is upside-down and flips it. "Oh, whoops!" Lucy clears her throat and changes her voice to a more serious tone. "Sorry, you're going to have to come with me."
"Oh, sorry, I—Freeze Ray!" Gru whips out his Freeze Ray and fires it. A wall of ice heads for Lucy.
But before it reaches her, Lucy pulls from her purse a Mini-Flamethrower, which instantly melts the ice.
"You know, you really should announce your weapons after you fire them, Mr. Gru," Lucy says. "For example ..." She pulls out a tube of lipstick and fires it at Gru. The tip flies through the air and hits him in the chest. ZAP! His body begins flailing in different directions before he finally passes out.
"AVL-Issued Lipstick!" Lucy calls out with glee.
Unfortunately, when she tries to load Gru into her car, he is a lot heavier than she expects. She finally gets him into the trunk and is about to close it, when two Minions come around the corner.
Tom and Stuart see their boss in the trunk and exchange horrified looks. "Boss!" they call out as the trunk is shut and Lucy gets into the car.
Excerpted from Despicable Me 2: The Junior Novel by Annie Auerbach. Copyright © 2013 Annie Auerbach. Excerpted by permission of Little, Brown Books for Young Readers.
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